Do your students get upset over little things? Do they whine or complain when they don’t get their way? Do they have few or no strategies when trying to solve small problems?
It’s concerning to see how easily many children get upset, give up, and seem genuinely baffled when faced with even the smallest of problems.
Some examples of small problems that I see students getting upset over are;
- Not Called On
- Not Called On First
- Needing To Wait
- Not Liking An Activity
- Not Doing Something Perfectly (their version of perfectly)
- Not Getting The Seat They Want
- Not Getting A Color They Want
- Not Getting To Go First In A Game Or In Line
- Someone Bumped Into Them
- Someone Looked At Them Funny
- Someone Is Touching Them
- Someone Said Something To Them That They Didn’t Like….
And the list goes on and on…
Imagine if the students could solve these problems on their own, without getting super upset?
Teaching your students to think of problems like these as small problems, or as I like to call them “no problem problems” is a great way to initiate successful problem solving.
First, students need to understand that their problem is small (assuming it really is), then, you can start to work on how to solve it and how to match the size of the emotion to the size of the problem.
*Note: Be sure to work on this before the student has a problem, rather than during a problem. It is very difficult to teach a student during a problem.
Why Is This Important?
Children need to develop good problem solving skills in order to get along with others and take care of their needs. They need to be able to stay calm in order to handle small problems quickly and effectively. And they need to be able to think through and try a variety of possible solutions, without getting so frustrated that they can’t go on when something doesn’t work out immediately.
CLICK HERE TO READ ABOUT: 5 Ways We Can Help Our Students Learn To Solve Their Own Problems
While your there, pick up this Problem Solving Freebie. This poster and activity set will help you teach your students how to solve their own problems. Grab it HERE.
Thanks So Much and Happy Teaching!
Cindy ~Socially Skilled Kids
Original Blog Post Written 12/0917